24 Jun 2016

CLH Blog - Top Tips on keeping your residents cool in the summer!

We are always looking forward to a ‘good summer’ and more often than not we’re disappointed!  If the temperatures do rise, there are plenty of ways to help keep cool. Older people can be particularly susceptible to heat-related illnesses, so follow these top tips to avoid your residents becoming uncomfortable in the summer sun. 

  • Take cold drinks regularly, such as water and fruit juice. Avoid tea, coffee and alcohol.
  • Wear loose, cool clothing, and a hat if going outdoors.
  • Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don't go out between 11am and 3pm (the hottest part of the day) if vulnerable to the effects of heat.
  • Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn't possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed.
  • Keep windows and doors open to increase cross circulation.
  • Check medicines can be stored according to the instructions on the packaging.
  • Take cool baths or showers.
  • Splash faces with cool (not very cold) water, or place a damp cloth on the back of the neck to help cool off.
  • Eat normally, even if not hungry - a normal diet helps to replace salt loss from sweat. In addition, try to have more salads and fruit, as these contain a lot of water.


Dehydration and overheating

Extreme heat can cause dehydration and overheating. It’s important to carry on eating a balanced diet to replace any salt lost due to sweating, as well as drinking regularly. Watch out for certain signs – if cramps begin in arms, legs or stomach, if the resident experience mild confusion, weakness or sleep problems, then rest in a cool place and drink plenty of water.


Heat exhaustion and heat stroke

Heatstroke can develop if heat exhaustion is left untreated – but it can also develop suddenly and without warning.

If a resident appears to be suffering from heat exhaustion you must help them:

  • Find a cool place to lie down
  • Loosen tight clothes and remove any unnecessary clothing
  • Drink plenty of water or fruit juice
  • Sponge with cool water or have a cool shower


Symptoms should subside after 30 minutes, if not, seek medical advice.

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